Based on the real-life prison break of two political captives, Escape From Pretoria is a race-against-time thriller set in the tumultuous apartheid days of South Africa.


Francis Annan


Francis Annan (screenplay by), L.H. Adams (screenplay by) | 2 more credits »
1,986 ( 103)
2 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Radcliffe ... Tim Jenkin
Daniel Webber ... Stephen Lee
Ian Hart ... Denis Goldberg
Mark Leonard Winter ... Leonard Fontaine
Nathan Page ... Mongo
Grant Piro ... Schnepel
Lenny Firth ... Vermellen
Lliam Amor ... Kitson
Adam Tuominen ... Jeremy
PJ Oaten ... Rabkin
Ratidzo Mambo ... Daphne
Vuyo Loko Vuyo Loko ... Potluck
Maris J. Caune Maris J. Caune ... Loggie (as Maris J Caune)
Adam Ovadia Adam Ovadia ... Van Wyk
Rory Walker Rory Walker ... Walter


Based on the real-life prison break of two political captives, Escape From Pretoria is a race-against-time thriller set in the tumultuous apartheid days of South Africa.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Survival is key. Freedom is victory. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, language and some disturbing material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Despite having to conflate some characters and elements of the story to fit into 105 minutes screen time, the team were keen to ensure authenticity where possible in the story telling. Tim Jenkin's on-set comment that some major scenes were 'almost exactly how it actually happened' was therefore a great encouragement. See more »


When Tim and Leonard exit from hiding in the storage closet, the closet door is left ajar. A few minutes later when Leonard is checking for the guard, a shot of the staircase shows the closet door closed. When Tim and Leonard return to hide, the closet door is ajar again. See more »


Denis Goldberg: Don't run away, stay and fight!
Tim Jenkin: [holds up a key] This is how we fight!
See more »


Referenced in Escape from Pretoria: Cast Interviews (2020) See more »

User Reviews

Well Executed Old-School Jailbreak Thriller
7 March 2020 | by TwistedContentSee all my reviews

Not two weeks after "Guns Akimbo" Daniel Radcliffe rewards us with yet another great performance, this time in a tightly made, old-school B-like jailbreak thriller set against a historically true background. Francis Annan's "Escape from Pretoria", while flawed in some areas, gives legitimate thrills and keeps you excited all throughout, as you follow the trio of men on the quest of freedom.

"Escape from Pretoria" is based on the prison escape of two political captives from Pretoria Central Prison in South Africa in 1979. The movie starts with an introduction of the political events taking place in South Africa during that time, more precisely the Apartheid. Soon after Tim Jenkin (Daniel Radcliffe) and Stephen Lee (Daniel Webber) get arrested and sent to prison for 8 or more years, there they meet politically related Denis Goldberg (Ian Hart) and their third accomplice Leonard Fontaine (Mark Leonard Winter). Most of the time we spent inside the prison, following the routine and efforts of our three main heroes - the story focuses a lot on creating suspense and in doing so has it has created many good and very enjoyable sequences. It's all about the thrill of finding the means to reach freedom. "Escape from Pretoria" is a neat and successful exercise in a familiar formula, utilized since way back when, Clint Eastwood's "Escape from Alcatraz" has the same qualities. Includes also great attention to detail. The pacing's nice and even, with some great pick-ups here and there. With the focus being on atmosphere, excitement and genre mechanics, the script is lacking in the area of depth, more precisely the characters, there's not a lot of set-up or backstory for them. However, the performances make up for that. Visually, the movie excels as well, using various cool camera tricks and touching up the suspense with technical means, the cinematic language is on point all throughout.

"Escape from Pretoria" is a great procedural thriller, a successful execution of genre mechanics, a carefully planned movie about planning. If it lacks depth, it definitely possesses a good entertainment value, further fulfilled with great acting work. Good prison-set movies don't come out all that often. My rating: 7/10.

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UK | Australia | USA | South Africa


English | French

Release Date:

6 March 2020 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Escape from Pretoria See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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